AbstractConditions producing disastrous flooding in Uttarakhand, India, in June 2013 differed from conditions that produced other notorious floods in the Himalayan region in recent years. During the week preceding the Uttarakhand flood, deep convection moistened the mountainsides, making them vulnerable to flooding. However, the precipitation producing the flood was not associated with a deep convective event. Rather, an eastward-propagating upper-level trough in the westerlies extended abnormally far southward, with the jet reaching the Himalayas. The south end of the trough merged with a monsoon low moving westward across India. The merged system produced persistent moist low-level flow oriented normal to the Himalayas that advected large amounts of water vapor into the Uttarakhand region. The flow was moist neutral when it passed over the Himalayan barrier, and orographic lifting produced heavy continuous rain over the region for 2–3 days. The precipitation was largely stratiform in nature although embedded convection of moderate depth occurred along the foothills, where some mild instability was being released. The Uttarakhand flood had characteristics in common with major 2013 floods in the Rocky Mountains in Colorado and Alberta, Canada.
Monthly Weather Review – American Meteorological Society
Published: Nov 6, 2017
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